Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Our Miracle :)

"Come and listen, all you who fear God; let me tell you what he has done for me......Praise be to God, who has not rejected my prayer or withheld his love from me!" (Psalm 66:16, 20)

I'm not even sure how to start this post because I'm still so overwhelmed by what God has done lately, but I'll try to organize my thoughts so that it makes SOME kind of sense!

I have to start with what I had been praying for. For WHATEVER reason, for the first time in my life I seemed to be craving a reminder from God that I MATTERED. I know that seems ridiculous, and to even say it outloud feels silly because I KNOW I matter to Him. I KNOW He loves me (and each of us!) individually, intimately, personally, unconditionally, COMPLETELY. But... for the past few months questions had been popping into my head causing confusion for me and unrest. It's hard to explain the confusion because all the while the questions were popping in my head, I knew my heart knew the answer to them. But I prayed against the doubts trying to shake me (again, not doubt in God... I can't even verbalize what it was that I was beginning to wonder about) and asked God to please show me again how REAL and how PERSONAL He is. And how I, Becky Woods, matter to Him even though I know we ALL matter to Him. (I'm also a words of affirmation person, if you've ever read the book The Five Love Languages :), so I guess I was just feeling a little insecure and needing some affirmation). Anyway, that was where my heart was at. Knowing God's love to be real but longing to have the personal reminder as encouragement.

Aside from that, we had recently finished our month long road trip and had sort of given up on the idea of a van or traveling vehicle for our family happening at all or any time soon. We had prayed and hoped it would happen before we thought we needed it, but doors seemed to be shutting to the options we thought would work. So we simply prayed and told God we were happy with our toyota, and if that's what he wants us to travel in as a family, that's fine by us. And we stopped fighting and trying to find options for a van. We gave it to God. (we THOUGHT we did that to begin with but really we hadn't released full control to Him I don't think).

Last week Jonas' producer called us up and said he had unbelievable news for us. (and bear with me, I'll try to be as accurate as I can since I kind of heard it second hand from Jonas, but from my understanding this is how it all basically went down) :). A lady in Australia (who we do NOT know) called his producer up and asked if he was working with someone who's wife used to be ill...he said yes and told her about Jonas. She said God was telling her that she needs to get involved in our lives somehow and asked what we might be needing. The only thing he could think of was our needing a van, so she said she wanted to pray about it. She called him back and said 100% God was telling her to buy us a van! And so she planned it all out to be a surprise to us and ordered and bought us a BEAUTIFUL, 2012 Chevy Express Conversion van for us to travel in as a family!! It's BEYOND what we could have ever hoped for! It's literally like a limo van with ALL the extras (huge tv, wireless earphones for each seat, plush leather captains chairs, reclining chairs, back bench turns into a bed, lighting that changes color, amazing sound system, ETC!)  included. So this week a gorgeous white conversion van pulled into our driveway and the keys were handed over to us!!!!! And she had mentioned that when God gives a gift he doesn't do it half way... he gives a complete gift so that we won't be left with stress or worry so she's covering the taxes and insurance on it for awhile!!!!! She made it very clear that this is NOT from her but from GOD and that she simply was being obedient to Him. She said that God wants us to know that this is to be considered a LOVE NOTE from Him and His smile of approval! (I was sobbing. Happy tears of course) And that he LAVISHLY loves us and we need to know that. She said other things that HUMBLED and AMAZED us with how God described us to her and how she was so in awe of the love she felt from Him to us. (as He loves all of us!!!! I don't say any of this to say we're loved more IN ANY WAY but it was SUCH an answer to prayer for Him to remind me personally of His amazing love!!!)

I've learned so many things from this. First of all, he hears the cries of our hearts and sees the desires of hearts and like a father he KNOWS how to give good gifts to His kids! (sorry, don't remember the Bible reference for that) And I think it's Ephesians 3:20 that says "Now to Him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to His power that is at work within us, to Him be the glory..." Once we stopped trying to do it OUR way God was given complete control to do things HIS way and HIS way is ALWAYS better than ours. We think we know best for ourselves but we don't come close. And God loves to spoil his children...not with materialistic things (although I am GRATEFUL for this AMAZING van!) but with His love! What means more to me than the van is that the creator of the universe personally reminded me, just when my heart was needing it, of His individual love for me! And for Jonas! That He has His hand on our lives even when we don't see it or feel it... that He IS real and He proved that by talking to a stranger in AUSTRALIA about US and told her to provide the need we thought we had for traveling together as a family while at the same time giving her words to say from Him to us that brought HEALING to my insecurities spiritually and brought such assurance that there's no room for doubt. If the lady had just emailed us and said 'God told me about you guys and wanted you to know He loves you and has plans for you...' that would have been enough! But then God goes BEYOND our wildest dreams and shows just how He loves to bless us! (us meaning you too!) We have a GOOD God that sees us, that hears us, and not only hears us but he CARES about our hurts, no matter how silly they seem. He didn't scold me with the attitude of "you know better! You know I love you and I've reminded you time and again in the past, stop being selfish and asking me for more affirmations of my love... I have better things to do with my time than to waste it on one insecure girl in Pascoag, RI." No, he SMILES and LOVES the chance to once again wrap His arms around us and remind us of His love! I think of my sons and if one of them were to come to me and feel insecure and ask me to remind me of how much I love them, I'd LOVE the chance to scoop them up and start at the beginning and tell them about how when they were born what JOY they brought, and go through every aspect I love about them.... Our God is the same way. He created us! He made us and doesn't see us the way we see ourselves. That's something I realized too when this lady was sharing how God described us to her. Jonas and I looked at eachother confused thinking that couldn't be us she was describing! We know our flaws all too well yet God doesn't see us through our flaws and mistakes. He's aware of them, but he sees us with the potential He created us with. He sees our whole life....not just this moment. He sees us through the saving filter of Jesus, if that makes any sense. And although we're sinful, we're imperfect, we're stubborn..... He adores us! I can't grasp that. I've been struggling with that (not sure why) but not being able to understand how He can love us SO deeply and individually and fairly... and yet I'm not expected to understand HOW He loves. Just to ACCEPT His love.

So I hope that through this miraculous testimony of ours you're reminded that God IS real, He does care about YOU and your needs and your desires, and He longs to pour His love out on you. No one could love you more than He does and He longs to communicate with you. Give Him control and let Him amaze you with how He provides.

Another note, when we were on our road trip in August we were able to stop by a store Jonas had visited months before when I was still going through chemo. I forget the details of the story now but I think he had randomly run into someone who had found my name on a prayer wall in a boutique (Philanthropy) in Nashville area and had taken it to keep me in prayer. It was such a cool thing to see that someone had posted a prayer for me, and that someone else had taken it and that Jonas somehow ran into that person! So when we were there we stopped in at the boutique and I told one of the owners who I was and they remembered our story and were all teary eyed that I was a happy ending to one of their prayers on their wall. So here's a picture of that.

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Time for a road trip!!

Well, the time has come for our little family to be just crazy enough to decide to do a road trip to MO with a 2 and 5 year old. :) It should be interesting since Hunter finds a 30 min car ride long and unbearably boring....but I think we'll survive this. Thanks to portable dvd players, toys, books, games, and prizes, I think we'll be able to AT LEAST get 3 hours before we're asked the dreaded question, "Are we there yet?" We're excited, though. Jonas' younger brother, Christian, will be heading off to his first year at Evangel University in Springfield so we'll be there to send him off (which means I'll be there sobbing uncontrollably and humiliating him in front of his college peers) and we'll get to drive by our old home in Springfield and show Hunter where he grew up (again, this will include me crying like a baby I'm sure). And of course, we're hoping to catch up with old friends and just RELAX! We have a couple shows/concerts on the way to MO and on the way out of MO but for the most part our time there will be purely vacation time for us, which I'm looking forward to. Did I mention our road trip will last a month?! It's a crazy amount of time to take two little ones on the road but we figure it will be a family adventure. We're hoping and PRAYING the kids will adjust well to traveling with us so that as Jonas travels we can all go with him. And I'm praying that things will work out for us in the future so that we can bring along a nanny! :) (seriously)

An update on my mom, for those who have committed to praying for her. She's officially all done with everything! Done with chemo, done with radiation and she got through it wonderfully! She's getting her strength back and she feels great. Now she's just waiting for her hair to grow back in which seems to be more on the slower, stubborn side. Thank you if you were part of those who've prayed over her!

And as far as me, I'm still doing great....feeling great... and honestly, I no longer seem to struggle with that daily fear of cancer returning or thoughts of dying. Of course they can come and go, but overall I now have peace and I feel normal again. I'm not obsessed over it like I was. I'm not scared and emotional every day over that. So thank you again for those who have prayed for me and have prayed for God's peace to fill me because I can definitely feel it.

I have a head full of curl now! Which is totally foreign to me. I feel like a poodle :) I'm trying to figure out how to style stubborn curls that constantly disobey and am trying to figure out if I want to keep my hair short for awhile or grow it out. I'm so curious as to whether or not my hair will stay this way or go back to how it used to be. Maybe this is the beginning of the beach wave I prayed for :)

As always, I love to leave you with something you can pray for for us :) We've noticed recently (on an overnight trip/concert) how challenging it is and will be to travel with our kids. Liam is like the energizer bunny and is constantly moving, non stop... curious and active. (but sweet) :) (but exhausting!) And it's proving impossible for me to sound check, etc while having to chase him around. And Hunter has moments of confidence and bravery and sometimes will feel totally at ease meeting new kids, etc but then if he hits a moment of being over tired can breakdown (and I mean BREAK DOWN) into an inconsolable mess with which there is NO reasoning or comforting. He hates to go places without us where he doesn't know anyone... and apparently doesn't always do well sitting in the front row while we sing. (on this one trip I had to walk off stage and remove my wailing child and do everything I could to calm him down....let's just say it was a BAD weekend with the kids) :) So in all honesty, prayers over our kids adjusting well at each new place that we stay and sing,etc... are so needed! And that God provides just the right people to help us watch our kids who are trustworthy and great with our kids. I think once our kids get a little more used to the routine of traveling it'll get easier.
Off to start packing for our trip!!


Saturday, April 6, 2013

A year older

I've kind of missed having reasons to release my thoughts and emotions through writing...on my online diary (aka blog) :) so even though the dramatic part of our journey seems to be done for now (and hopefully for good!) I still plan to share my emotions for anyone who cares to keep up on them :).

I've still been struggling with how to keep the "bad news" of the chance of my cancer returning out of my mind. It's a daily battle. There's nothing wrong with the reminder of the "facts"...although I pray a day comes when I actually forget to think about it for an entire day! But I struggle with dwelling on it and letting fear creep in. It's robbing me of the joy God's given me. The victory God's given me! I know people always say you should live each day as though it's your last and I get that... choose your behavior with wisdom and love and don't waste your opportunities, but for me that also invites a sense of depression and fear and weepiness... so I'm trying to balance making the most of each day but without thinking I'm going anywhere anytime soon :). Honestly, it'd be a lot easier to face the unknowns in my future if I didn't have kids to worry about.
..... I know, I know... I don't have to worry about them.... (I can hear Jonas singing his song right now, "I am not worried!") God is in control and if my time comes He WILL take care of my boys and provide for them and all of that. I just hate the thought of it. I wonder if I should be journaling letters to them so that INCASE I pass from it coming back I will have been able to say the things I wanted to... but in doing that, I feel like I'm planning on my death! Ugh....the inner struggle is so frustrating. So..... that's what I'm dealing with and I'm doing my very best to remind myself of the fact that IT DOESN'T MATTER what doctors say. God will do as he pleases and I CAN trust that.

A verse that I've read and heard all my life suddenly took on new meaning in relation to what I'm going through. "Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, and faithful in prayer." Romans 12:12
(did I already post this in my previous post? sorry if I did) I've been depressed in my hope for my future... fearful in my hope for my future... but God's telling me to face it with JOY! I feel like he's got a huge smile on his face and is telling me "don't forget what I just did for you! Rejoice! Be glad! Celebrate your future in me! I gave you a future! Stop living in dread of when your future will end!" and to be patient in affliction... I feel like I did that through the chemo stuff. but in a sense, to be patient with myself even now as I struggle with my thoughts and emotions and how to process it all. And of course, FAITHFUL in prayer! Our weapon! Our prayers ARE heard and ARE powerful and I don't want a day to go by when I'm not in prayer over my body, my family, God's purpose for me.

My mom pointed out a situation in the Bible that spoke to me too. The story of Jehoshaphat. I'm totally summing it up so you can look it up for more details and all of that :), but basically he and his nation were under attack by 3 huge armies. Realizing how helpless he was, he held a day of prayer in which God told him that he would win the battle without fighting. Without having to do anything! He trusted God so completely that he sent his army away and instead called for singers to go ahead and sing praises to God! And when they approached the invaders they saw that the armies had already killed themselves!
    So this is what I take away from it. WHATEVER your battle....the huge armies ahead of you (mine was cancer and is the risk of it in my future, threatening to bind me in fear)...could be your marriage, your finances, a habit you know you need to kick but can't seem to...depression, etc. We need to realize we ARE helpless without God's help. If we attempt to face the enemy on our own, we will fail. So we call out to Him in prayer! God help us!!!!!  We can't do this alone! (remember the verses that say "when we are weak, then we are strong"...his strength) so God steps in with his crazy ways of doing things :) (which is one of the many things I love about Him. He's unexpected and catches everyone off guard and yet ALWAYS comes through) he tells us, 'I'm going to win this battle for you. You don't have to fight or lift a finger.... all you have to do is show up. Face your enemy and worship me and trust me.'  So, we turn our eyes away from the numbers...away from the statistics...away from "reality" and look at JESUS. When we do, how can you help but praise him? Sing out to him! Cry out to him! LOVE ON HIM! Be reminded of how good he is! how he holds ALL authority over EVERYTHING! How one day every knee WILL bow and confess he IS God! (I feel as though even my cancer bowed to him!) and while we are focusing on Jesus and worshiping him, our enemy has fallen. Without us having to do a thing but trust in God. How beautiful is that?! And I can tell you it's not just some bible story. Not fantasy. At the beginning of my journey I felt in my heart so strongly to PRAISE GOD. Not knowing the outcome... but that I was to give him praises and keep my eyes on him. and my enemy was destroyed. Now I have to do it again... daily... with any fears, any struggles, any issues that come up.
I hope that encourages someone. It totally encouraged me.

And even though I know these things and feel reminded of it, I'm still crying every day at weird moments when fear gets the best of me. So I would SOOOO appreciate your ongoing prayers not only for my health to stay 100% but for my heart to truly feel the peace I know God gives. If I could just keep my focus! I do have to say though, this past week or so I have been SMACKED ACROSS THE HEAD with some form of a realization of who Jesus is. I know him and have loved him but it's as if I saw another glimpse of him (out of nowhere too!) and I have been SOOO in love! Truly, weeping at the thought of him (kind of awkward, especially with the episodes of the Bible playing and all :) Luckily Jonas has been the only one in the room with me when we watch those ) But weeping happy tears. Grateful tears. Just the fact that I know Jesus and I feel so loved by him but more importantly how lovable he is! I'm tearing up right now. (but then again, I do cry over everything).

It breaks my heart that there are people out there that don't believe you can know Jesus personally and can hear from him. YOU CAN! And that they've been mislead to think he's some religious figure we respect and remember but don't understand the real Jesus. His LOVING side, his playful side, his caring side, his protective side, his compassionate side, his healing, his wisdom, his bravery.... (sigh). I'm in love. Incase someone's reading this who doesn't know that kind of a Jesus (THE Jesus), just talk to him. Tell him you want to know if he's real... and genuinely mean it. He'll respond. Not sure how because, like I said, he's very unexpected :) but I'm overwhelmed with his love for us and he loves you and has a plan for YOU. has healing waiting for YOU. Has deliverance available to YOU. (sorry, not trying to sound preachy. Just can't keep this treasure to myself) :)

On a totally different note, I have hair! And I am officially now going out in public without a hat or scarf. I'm getting stares all the time, which is a little awkward.  But I wear my fuzz with pride :) A reminder of what I've gone through.

Tomorrow is my birthday.... 35! Normally I would be joking about needing to wear black in mourning of hitting that age :) (not to imply that anyone older than that should be depressed or feel old!) :) but I'm seeing this birthday differently. I'm THRILLED to be given the chance to turn 35. I'm thrilled to have the opportunity to AGE and get wrinkles! and to have achey bones! :) (remind me of that when I'm wrinkled and wobbling). I welcome losing my glow :) ( I tell that to Jonas all the time... I feel like I'm getting older and losing my youthful glow. My skin is old) but Im alive :) So it's a good birthday :)

I can't wait for Jonas' album to be done already! It's all recorded and I've heard unfinished clips which sound AMAZING but I feel as though every song on this album relates to our journey. Maybe I'm selfishly claiming it as my album :) but it's as though the songs have come alive and taken on meaning with what God's taught us and brought us through. I can't wait for you all to have a chance to hear it soon. He's only got a week or something like that left to raise the remainder of his money to be able to get the process completed (so that you all CAN hear it) :) so please pray for that to come in. If any are interested in donating to it go to his website and he has a link there. I'm so proud of him. Proud of what God's doing through his music and how PERSONAL this album is to me. I'm doing my best to be able to get to a point of being able to listen to each song without crying through it :). I mean, that'd be kind of awkward, right? We'd be on stage...him singing his heart out, and me next to him...holding a mic but sobbing with my ugly "cry" face, not able to sing a single note (and as he will tell you , when I cry, I sound like a yack giving birth...) . But it'd make for a memorable concert. So I'll leave you with that visual :).
Hugs to you all!

Monday, March 4, 2013

It's official!!!

After 6 long months I finally got the news I've been praying for... I AM NOW 100% CANCER FREE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! It's been an emotional day for me because I can still remember THE DAY I found out about my large tumor; can remember how scared I was; can remember the images I had in my mind of my babies growing up without their mama... I still cry every time I think of it. And now here I am, on the other side of it. Finally. Healed. Healthy again. PRAISE YOU JESUS! He had given me a peace in the beginning that I would be fine at the end of this and now I am :)

     But i'm just human. And just as I predicted, that feeling of fear of the future is creeping into my mind. My doctor I'm sure felt he needed to be honest and give me the truth about what COULD happen in my future but it sure didn't help me to hear it. I have a 50/50 chance of it coming back. (I don't like those odds). And if it comes back, I have to undergo an intense treatment of chemo that involves a stem cell transplant and it's risky and could be fatal. I think my odds of surviving that procedure would be above 50/50 but still.... a scary thing to hear about. And then he asks if we're going to go celebrate :) Instead I got into the car and sobbed! I'm sure my emotions are just a wreck, being a mixture of happy and sad, but it's so hard for me to feel like celebrating when I hear about what could happen. But how STUPID of me to be focusing on that and not on the healing God has given me!
One more thing that the doctor said that was a hard thing to hear... I was asking about what the process would be for us IF we decided we wanted to try for another baby someday (and I'm undecided on that right now) but he said his advice to us would be to consider that there is a possibility that I could always be in the unfortunate percentage and would we want to consider bringing a baby into the world if I have the chance of not making it. He was trying to be helpful, I know, in presenting all the factors and risks for our future and our decisions....but that was NOT a conversation I needed.
     So I'm needing a little bit of time to process this. I AM thrilled that I am healthy again :)! I THANK GOD I have more time with my boys and with Rob. I AM SO THANKFUL for everyone who's cared to pray for me. Instead of pretending the worst case scenario can't happen to me or won't happen to me, I want to be able to face that possibility but without fear. I want to be able to look the possibilities in the face and say with confidence that I still serve the same God and nothing is too difficult for Him. And His ways are bigger and better than mine. I can trust Him even when I don't understand why things go a certain way. And I know He loves me. But I'll be honest, tonight I'm struggling. Tonight I'm dealing with guilt for not feeling like celebrating just yet, dealing with fear of the worst case scenario, dealing with confusion as to why I'm going through this, and dealing with feelings of being overwhelmed. Once again I need to grab onto God's peace and NOT LET GO. It's a daily struggle to lay down my worries and anxieties and to keep my focus on Jesus and to TRUST.
      Why on earth was it so easy for me to have that peace and confidence when I HAD a tumor and didn't know the outcome...and yet now I'm 100%cancer free and I'm shaken because of the what if's in my future? How easy I can lose my focus. How quickly I can allow fear to rob my joy.  I KNOW that in the beginning I felt such peace because I had SOOOO many of you praying for me. So I'm asking you to PLEASE keep praying for me to continue to feel God's peace as I now walk into the unknown. :) And  OF COURSE please pray my family stays cancer free!!!!!!!!!
    No matter what we're all in God's hands. And it really does boil down to whether or not we trust God with our lives. No matter how scary circumstances get or how bad news can be, do we trust Him? Is He good or not? I believe He is. I KNOW He is.
    I'm sure tomorrow I"ll be in a better place...a happier place :). Because I do believe a celebration is needed! Again, thank you all for your prayers and for caring for us and sharing with us. I'm sure we'll continue to blog updates and random thoughts.
Including a picture of my last day at the hospital! (getting my paperwork ready to have my port taken out next week).

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Long overdue but happy!

I just realized HOW LONG it's been since we've updated our blog. Sorry!

I'll be honest... I kept waiting for Jonas to write something because I found myself in a place of real discouragement and didn't feel like I had anything uplifting or helpful to write. I didn't want to come across as contradicting everything I had previously written.....but I was finding myself OVERWHELMED. Strange how I started out my journey full of peace and confidence and assurance (I'm sure also due to all of your prayers!!!!) but I'm ending my journey overwhelmed and discouraged. (or... I WAS feeling that way a few weeks ago, but I believe things have changed and my focus is back where it needs to be). I guess it started when I had heard the news about my mom. It was just one of those blows that once again reminded me that we are NOT immune to danger, sickness, etc. I used to feel SO naively safe from all harm until, of course, it hit me. And then my mom. (by the way, my mom is doing well. She had a successful lumpectomy and will be starting chemo possibly next week and after maybe 6 cycles will then have radiation. Pray, please, for her to not feel much pain with all the pricks of shots and chemo treatments. And that she'll also adjust well to losing her hair, which is never an easy thing to face.)
   Then it was as if every day we were hearing bad after friends and family. Cancer, divorces, health problems, death....I felt like attacks were flying at us and near us from all angles and I became so fearful! I was so afraid something else was going to hit my little family. I started focusing on all of the bad around me, all of the scary, negative news and I felt like I was sinking. I was an emotional wreck! And it was hard for me because I've never experienced that before in my life where I was so burdened by other's problems to the point where it was driving fear into me. I felt like I was losing my footing somehow and I felt so vulnerable. BUT! It's like the story in the Bible where Peter (I hope I'm remembering this story right) :) stepped out of the boat and began walking to Jesus on water.... but as soon as he took his eyes of off Jesus and on the "fear" of the water around him, he began to sink. That's what I was doing. I lost my focus temporarily and it sent me into a place I don't want to go again! I'm not sure if it's just me, though, because several friends of mine have also expressed this same problem lately of feeling overwhelmed and fearful of the bad news happening in their lives. So maybe it's not just me.
     I also was reading in Job and was reminded of a few things that really encouraged me. First of all, I guess I was needing assurance that there IS protection in God and I read in the first chapter where Satan was talking to God about Job and how there was a hedge of protection placed around Job, preventing harm to fall on him. That was so encouraging to me! If anything breaks through (or I should say, is allowed through) that hedge of protection, it's on God's terms! And then when I was reading about the bad news that Job was horrible thing right after another.... his first reaction was to fall on his knees in WORSHIP and he PRAISED GOD! Which reminded me of that first gut feeling God gave me at the begining of all of this. I remember hearing that I had cancer and my first instinct was " I need to praise God."  Just as Job was feeling overwhelmed and discouraged by the horrible events that happened to him, his first reaction was the right one and somehow I lost that direction the past month. So I'm refocusing and trying to remember NOT to focus on the bad around me... but to focus on God and the blessings he's given me in my own situation. And to praise Him and know that I CAN trust Him even when I feel like I'm confused, overwhelmed, discouraged, etc.
Our good news is that I had my LAST SESSION OF CHEMO this week!!! It's done! I still have the lovely poison going through my body this month, so I don't feel any different, but I think it'll hit me that it's over with next month when I don't have to go back for more. I DO want to celebrate but I'm cautiously waiting for the results of my next PETscan in 6 weeks. And again, please pray that I don't have that haunting thought in the back of my mind that it all may come back. I want to say "I'M DONE WITH CHEMO FOR GOOD!" but there IS that small voice that then follows up with "but are you really?" It's hard to celebrate when you can't seem to shake that little voice. So I'd appreciate your prayers with COMPLETE health for the future (no lymphoma, no breast cancer since that's now something in my family history... etc) and no fear as I live out my life.

This verse was encouraging to me. "The Lord himself goes before you and will be with you; He will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged." Deuteronomy 31:8

Side note: For the past month and a half my hair has been growing back! About a quarter of an inch or so... I was so excited! and with the past 2 treatments it wasn't falling out! But... I've noticed with the last  and final treatment, it's starting to fall out again :(  I'm hoping it grows back quickly. And lusciously :)

Thank you for your continued prayer! I still need it :)

Friday, December 7, 2012

I've had enough of cancer! more prayers needed

I just got a call from my mom today informing me that she has breast cancer.

URGH! Now I'm on the side of stressing and worrying over someone I love dealing with this. It's different when you're the one going through it. I kept thinking "Thank God it's me and not anyone else in my family! I don't think I could handle the stress of it happening to a family member" but... apparently now I have to once again remind myself of how big God is and how he is still above cancer. My mind tries to panic me into thinking that breast cancer is so much more serious than my lymphoma, but nothing is too big or scary for God. God has been healing me of my form of cancer and he can do the same with my mom if he chooses, and I pray that she will FULLY recover QUICKLY! PLEASE pray with me for that. And for WISDOM for the doctors (one of her doctors had told her she could wait a few months to see if maybe her mysterious cyst area was cancerous or not and I'm SO glad she decided to go ahead and get the biopsy and not wait!) She says she's not afraid of cancer. And a lot of that has to do with me having gone through my journey and she sees that I'm fine and not as horrible as it could have been. Everyone's journey will be different but I'm glad she's feeling peace! That helps me feel peace. But she IS afraid of pain. She has a very low pain tolerance and is more concerned about the pain from surgery, procedures, etc... so as little as that might seem, please do pray that she doesn't feel that much pain. We've been SOOOO blessed with people who have donated to us and helped us cover our finances and bills due during our time, so please pray that God will provide for their EVERY financial need as well. It's never easy on a missionary's budget. I know they have a wonderful, caring church family that I trust will surround them and help them as needed just as our church family helped us out. And I thank you all in advance for covering my mom in prayers too! Man am I sick of hearing of cancer popping up everywhere! But God is still worthy of our praise. He can still make something beautiful out of this, even if we never see it. I trust Him.
I'm including a picture of my mom and I. (and Hunter)
- Becky

Monday, December 3, 2012

Good News all Around by JONAS

It's been a while since we've posted on here.  I'm sure that can be torture but truthfully life started to fall back to normal for a while.  Becky has been feeling really healthy lately.  She is still handling the chemo with relative ease.  She still has dizzy spells from time to time but only 4 to 5 days after her doses.  We're going into her 6th chemo session tomorrow. She'll have 2 more after that!!!! Wow, that's amazing how fast it has gone by.  Please continue to pray that she gets through these sessions easily.  We feel so blessed to have you all praying for us as we drudge through this journey.

THE GOOD NEWS is (insert drum roll).....Becky's last Dr. appt showed that she was 99.99999999999999999999999999999999999999999999%  CANCER FREE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  The Dr. saw some inflammation from the chemo.  He's confident that it is not cancer but he, of course, won't take any chances.  So she is going to finish out her schedule chemo sessions.  We are over the moon about this news.  It has taken such a huge weight off our shoulders.

NOW PLEASE PRAY THAT IT NEVER RETURNS.  This will be the unfortunate burden that we'll carry from here on out.

This past weekend we spent our Saturday night performing at a benefit concert for a family in need.  We had a blast performing and ministering to a full house at "the Stable" in Chelmsford, MA.  Turns out that the entire night was orchestrated by our friends Kurt and Stefani to benefit US!  What?!!!  I thought we were playing a concert for some "other" family.  Weird moment.  We felt so blessed.  Wow, we love you all.

Here are few little snipits into our lives here at the Woods house.  Hunter turned 5 years old the other day.  What an awesome milestone.  Becky and I are shocked that we have a 5 year old.  NUTS.   Liam has learned to kiss with his lips smacking.  It's adorable as he kisses basically everything now.  Becky's hair is working super hard to grow.  Despite the chemo Becky has almost one inch peach fuzz all over her head.  It's pretty funny how it's fighting so hard to grow.  She's adorable as usual.

I broke down after being pressured by Becky and the kids to buy Christmas deer antlers and a big red nose to go on our vehicle.  To be honest, it's hard not to want to crawl into a hole when I'm driving it around.  They love it though.  I guess it's all about the memories.  I'll certainly remember this one.  This one will be logged in my brain as "the year Dad was made to feel stupid."  MMMMMM, good times.

Thanks for your continued prayers as we get through this next season and into the Spring.  The Dr. told us that Becky would be good to start to tour again with me in March.  This is HUGE news!  Becky, with exception to a few shows here and there, hasn't sung with me for almost 6 months.  (Shameless plug)  help us find concerts so that we can hit the road hard when March rolls around.  We are back to music full time but need help to keep us there in full time ministry.  We're traveling with the kids.  We just can't wait.

Please have an amazing Christmas season!!!!!